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Origin Marking

Volume 170: debated on Thursday 19 April 1990

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To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what progress he has made on the establishment of a European origin marking regime.

In accordance with an undertaking I gave to the House on 10 November 1988, Official Report, column 588-89, I wrote to ministerial colleagues in other member states and to the Commissioner then responsible for origin marking matters.I sought their views on a possible European Communitywide origin marking regime which would require the corrective marking of third-country imports bearing European brand-names. Such a regime would appear to be the most that could be required within the relevant provisions of the treaty of Rome, the interpretation of which has been established in a number of European Court rulings.Responses to my letter ranged from varying degrees of support to outright opposition. In several cases I received no reply even after several reminders. I have therefore reluctantly concluded that such a proposal would not command sufficient support to secure its implementation, and I do not propose to pursue the matter further.